Biscotti just might be one of the best cookies that you can pair with a cup of tea or coffee. The twice-baked Italian favorites are perfect for dunking, as their crisp texture means they can soak up a bit of flavorful liquid without becoming too mushy or falling apart. If dipping the cookies isn’t your favorite way to enjoy them, you can simply enjoy their crunchy texture as-is. In Ciao Biscotti: Sweet and Savory Recipes for Celebrating Italy’s Favorite Cookie, bisotti-fans will find more than 40 recipes for various types of biscotti so that you can munch your way through batch after homemade batch.
The book opens with an introduction to biscotti and to the tools and techniques that you’ll need to make the cookies. The tools required are simple, but there are a few techniques – such as shaping and slicing the logs of dough before the second baking – that are unique to biscotti and might take a bit of practice to ensure that you get the feel for it if you’ve never baked biscotti before. The book is divided into six chapters based on flavor. The first three chapters include classic flavors, chocolate biscotti and cookies with fruit in them, and the flavor combinations range from classic Anise to indulgent-sounding Browned Butter & Toblerone. The next two chapters capture biscotti flavors that you’re not going to see down at your local coffee shop, such as Green Tea and savory Gorgonzola & Walnut. The final chapter includes recipes for other types of Italian cookies such as meringues and amaretti – all cookies that are also crisp, but that are not exactly biscotti. The recipes are clearly written and are easy to follow along with. The method for the cookies is very similar from batch to batch, so these recipes are all about changing up the ingredients.
The recipes are illustrated with photographs that make the cookies look stunning. There are also whimsical illustrations throughout the book that give it a fun, funky feel – which is nice too see with such traditional cookies. The best thing about a book like this, however, is that it will give you lots of great recipes on which to put your own flavor twists, adding in spices, extracts, fruits, chocolate and cheeses (in the savory cookies) to come up with your own signature flavors, as well as allowing you to enjoy the classics.